Review by ANC108
"As satisfying as it is familiar."
Metroid Prime Corruption marks the end of what one could call the "Phazon Trilogy". While I have little doubt that they will continue to produce Metroid Prime games this is the coda to the reoccurring theme in the two previous titles. So how does it all end? That may depend on how much playtime you've had with the other Primes and how much you desire change. Although most should have no trouble finding something they can enjoy in this latest Metroid.
"If it ain't broke don't fix it." I'm sure we've all heard this adage thrown around before, but this is one that the developers at Retro Studios take to heart. If you played through the other Primes you're in for a spot of déjà vu. While it's a good game it's nothing you haven't seen before and this is where MP3 is most disappointing. For a FPS the Wii is wholly able of providing an intuitive system that anyone could pick up and play. What could be easier than pointing at what you want to shoot and firing? But there is so much more that the Wii can do that really isn't explored in MP3. Sure you twist the Wii-mote a few times to open some doors, or you flick the nunchuck toward some enemies and pull it back to rip off some limb, but beyond that this game could easily be played with an original GC controller. This is disappointing because one of the biggest draws of the Wii is its imaginative controller and the ways that it is utilized. Although the game never really feels Wii-specific (even when you're pulling and twisting your Wii-mote) that's not to say that it doesn't control well. In fact the game handles quite well, thanks to the Wii's controller, but rather it is more of an opportunity to do some interesting things that wasn't fully realized and that's where I was disappointed.
However despite the lack of change controlling Samus there is a marked change in the story in Corruption. Let's face it, we don't play Metroid for the storytelling, we pick it up because Metroid is just plain fun, but you pretty much know what you're getting into the moment you start up the game. Samus is thrust onto some planet to solve puzzles, get her suit upgraded and kill lots of indigenous species. Thus when I purchased the game I assumed that I would also be in for a very similar experience; however I was pleasantly surprised that this time around Retro Studios put some effort into the story and what a difference it has made. No longer is Samus the Sci-Fi action hero that we called a bounty hunter but never really saw her hunting any sort of bounties. This time we're presented with a Samus that is more of a mercenary who is working for a Galactic Federation that desperately needs all the help it can get. We get to interact with other NPCs and for once we don't do our talking with our arm cannon. While it certainly isn't the most enthralling story you'll find yourself in it is nonetheless a welcome change from the non-existent story we've seen in so many previous Metroids. Traveling from planet to planet and receiving updates on the mission at hand do wonders to help gently push the story onwards, whereas before the progression was spurred on by the gathering of new equipment that allowed you passage into a new area.
Although the story in this entry is much more pronounced than the previous games the focus still continues to remain on the gameplay and this is where Metroid gets things right (despite the fact that I was hoping for more Wii-specific ingenuity). Solving puzzles, acquiring new upgrades, blasting Space pirates and doing a little backtracking to get those upgrades you couldn't get before are the heart and soul of any Metroid game and this is certainly no exception. From the moment when you end your struggle on a certain puzzle, to fighting off waves of Space Pirates trying to seize your mobile nuclear weapon platform the gameplay is as exciting as it is varied. Although you'll spend a lot of time eradicating your enemies with destructive abilities you won't run into many challenges. When things look as though they may get difficult all one has to do is inject an energy tank and destroy any and all with your amazing Hypermode powers. Despite the fact that the challenge is a bit a lacking on the normal mode you're still in for an enjoyable adventure if even it's also fairly short. I finished the game in less than 14 hours and I'm not proud to say that I did a great deal of backtracking to gather every single upgrade. So even going at my sluggish pace completing the game with 100% in 14 hours makes the whole experience feel all too brief.
All in all it's another Metroid game that proves that using the same formula produces an entertaining experience if albeit a familiar one. If you're a fan of the series (or even if you're not) I see no reason that you wouldn't get 15 enjoyable hours of this game (more if you choose to play it over and spend time collecting all of the bonuses).
+ Accessible FPS action combined with puzzle solving satisfaction.
+ A story that helps propel you forward in exploring the game.
- Fun but far too similar to the previous Primes.
- Short and fairly simple to see all it has to offer.
Final Score 8/10
Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 09/24/07
Game Release: Metroid Prime 3: Corruption (US, 08/27/07)
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